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In this presentation, we will discuss an ongoing collaboration to build a pedagogy-focused digital humanities (DH) network for the greater St. Louis metropolitan area. In developing the network, we have drawn upon lessons learned by other efforts at networking under-resourced institutions of higher education for the purposes of sharing digital humanities resources and advancing DH pedagogy and access for underserved populations, but we have also broken new ground by including secondary education institutions as equal partners.

The network responds to inequities in academia (with the goal of dismantling hierarchies between secondary and postsecondary education and between well-resourced and under-resourced institutions) and in the region (seeking to address the impacts of St. Louis’s persistent racial and economic segregation on pedagogy). We hope to create more equitable access to DH education throughout the region and contribute to broader social justice goals. Recently, undergraduate and grade school education have begun to receive more attention from DH scholars. A special issue of Digital Humanities Quarterly devoted to undergraduate education appeared in 2017, and conferences have drawn attention to secondary and postsecondary DH education. While encouraging, much work remains to be done in developing sustainable infrastructures to support the role of DH in high school and college curricula. Moreover, in the absence of increases in public funding, inequities in resources and training between institutions can only be addressed through the pooling of resources across institutional boundaries. The St. Louis Digital Humanities Network was created to address these needs. The project formally kicked off in April 2022 with a mutual-learning workshop, at which the project co-directors met with secondary education faculty to develop network priorities. Another workshop in September 2022 brought together secondary and postsecondary faculty to set in motion network collaborations. In our presentation, we will discuss the workshops’ key findings and collaborative projects, including a curated website of digital humanities lessons, a regional showcase of student DH work, and the development of partnerships with local history and culture institutions.

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